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Journal for the Study of Religion

On-line version ISSN 2413-3027
Print version ISSN 1011-7601

Abstract

HILTON, John L.. Albinism in the Ancient Mediterranean World. J. Study Relig. [online]. 2021, vol.34, n.1, pp.1-28. ISSN 2413-3027.  http://dx.doi.org/10.17159/2413-3027/2021/v34n1a1.

The discovery of DNA in the 20th century and recent biomedical research into the human genome in Southern Africa have shed much light on the diagnostic, epidemiological, and sociological aspects of albinism. Less attention has been given to the historical evidence for the condition and its religious context, especially in the ancient Mediterranean World. This article assembles the meagre evidence for albinism in antiquity and investigates to what extent it was treated as 'sacred'.

Keywords : Ancient Mediterranean; albinism; the sacred; conception; sacrifice; astral cults.

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